Viber is rolling out new versions of its iOS and Android apps, and they come with this new feature called Secret Chats. However, the new feature may not really be “new” at all since the Boston-based company is being accused of copying the said feature from Snapchat. 

Just after Viber launched the updates for its free messaging and calling mobile apps, TechCrunch published a story on how the company simply cloned some Snapchat features with Secret Chats. The tech news site pointed out how this new feature on the Viber apps have the same concept and use as the self-destructing snaps on Snapchat. It is also said to have copied the feature that alerts users whenever the person on the other end takes a screenshot of the timed chat messages. 

In February, Viber also introduced self-destructing content to its iOS and Android apps, but it was for when users want the content they send to vanish after a couple of seconds. Named Secret Messages, the feature enables users to send chat messages, photos and videos to their contacts that would disappear after 1, 3, 7 or 10 seconds, depending on the time limit the sender selected. 

While Secret Messages was introduced as a feature that would allow users to send content that self-destructs once they have been viewed by the receiver, the new Secret Chats app is marketed as a feature that enables users to keep track of their conversations and set a self-destruct timer for every message they encode in the conversation. What’s more is that each Secret Chat cannot be forwarded to really ensure that what is said in the convo will leave no trace. 

Meanwhile, the assumption that Viber is copying Snapchat is very understandable, considering that other messaging services have also released their own version of the self-destructing messages. Moreover, this move by Viber is clearly one of its efforts in realizing its goal of beating WhatsApp and Facebook’s Messenger.